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Old Boys Newsletter Message From The Rector - Term 1, 2022

Dave Thorp —

Kia ora everyone, It’s great to be taking part in the first instalment of our 2022 newsletter - thanks for setting this up, Kevin O’Sullivan and Kelly Hamer!

Like the previous two years, 2022 (so far) has been incredibly frustrating at times. To counter this, of course, it’s great how the young men of the school aren’t too worried about pandemics, budget blow-outs, supply chains and all the other things that are sending me to an early grave - they just get on with being teenagers who have more important things to think about. 

With the wonderful refurbishment and restoration of the Memorial Library now complete, we can now turn our attention to the redevelopment of the Rectory Field. This is an itch that we have been desperate to scratch for a very long time. No doubt, all old boys will have vivid memories of this hallowed ground - scenes of triumph (and a few small character building humiliations) are probably flitting through your mind as you read this.

 Sadly, though, the plain truth is that the Rectory Field is an uneven, poorly drained and grassed space that just isn’t fit for purpose in a 21st Century school. And, until now, a lack of funding has stopped us from doing anything about it. That situation changed when the government offered schools a one-off grant under their School Investment Package special projects scheme. We are starting this very week! The ground will be levelled, the cricket wicket will be shifted to provide more uniform boundaries and a wonderful football field will be created on the western side. It will become a much needed home ground for our outstanding 1st XI Football side. It will have state of the art drainage and irrigation and will be the best multi-use sports ground in the district. 

Once again we have received the help of old boys to get this project up and running because the government funding was never going to be enough. Thanks so much to the Foundation for contributing $100,000 to the cause. I can’t wait to see the finished product! 

Despite many weather and pandemic interruptions (cricket suffered a bit from this), we managed to get to the end of our summer sports seasons. Our rowers did extremely well at the National Champs, the Maadi Cup. Our small squad of 10 brought home 2 Bronze Medals (the U16 Quad and the U16 Single) and a Silver Medal (U18 Double). Amazing what a bit of dedication and some outstanding coaching (thank you Brian Smith!) will do. Winter is coming and all the big team sports are now kicking into gear - we are looking good for success I think. 

Finally, just a word on the Teschemaker Cup. Over the last 2 and a bit years I have thoroughly enjoyed my involvement with this prestigious award. My role is a functional one; I contact the recipient and arrange a venue and time for the ceremony, which is conducted by the National President of the Old Boys Association. It has been such a pleasure to meet and/or talk with Don Braid, Nigel McMillan and Josh Thomson - people who have achieved so much but are still driven to produce work of the highest quality in business, science and entertainment. They all have a wonderful, down to earth South Canterbury manner and they have all appreciated their time at TBHS. What’s even more staggering is that Don, Nigel and Josh are just the last 3 in a long line of outstanding recipients dating back 130+ years. 

Timaru Boys’ High School clearly has provided a rich learning environment for all boys over the years and it still does in 2022. It’s a place where all boys are welcome, regardless of their parents’ incomes and it’s a place where boys are supported to develop their passions and interests. Thanks to you all for your continuing support. Scientia Potestas Est.